-The Sammy's of Chi
Its now time for one of my favorite joints in all of Chicago to be showcased here on S'C'&C. When I went away to Tampa, Florida for my freshman year of college I might not of learned too much inside the classrooms but I sure learned alot out of them. Like what a common breakfast/lunch joint/hangout is all about in the Cuban communities. I had some excellent spots in my regular rotation for great tasting cheap local lunches while down there and missed them greatly when I was no longer. So when I first went to El Cubanito on Pulaski and Wrightwood in Logan Square I was immediately transported back to Tampa upon entering the tiny little building that can hold maybe 6 customers max inside.
a mighty popular Logan Square stop
El Cubanito became one of my favorites even before I took a bite out of anything from there. I had heard and read about it on the 'net and wasted no time in in getting over there and trying it out. This tiny little Cuban sandwich joint has the looks and feeling as if it was towed to Chicago from Miami or Tampa. Its small so the menu is too but I still have the hardest time choosing what to order and never go here and order just one sandwich. The menu is above the register which is worked by a lovely Cuban lady who charms in every way possible. There is also a walk up window on the side and they open at 7a on weekdays and are popular for cafe con leche and toast. During lunch hours it can get very busy but they are in the process of moving next door to a much bigger space.
The Sandwich Menu...its all good.
The only thing I don't like about going to Cubanito is making the decision of what to get. The only thing I know for sure is that I will getting myself a can of Iron Beer pop which is an 90+ year old Cuban soft drink. It has a similar flavor profile to Kola Champagne but I think I like Iron Beer better. It goes great with all of the sandwich selections. I'm not a coffee drinker but people sure do line up at that side window to get theirs.
Cuban soda pop
As its known on here I am a huge fan of the Cuban sandwich and consider it one of the best regional sandwiches in all of the country. Myself and others will say that Cubans just aren't the same anywhere else as they are down in Florida. This is mostly due to the Cuban baked bread used from the local bakeries down there not being readily available anywhere else. However we have some pretty good Cuban sandwich joints around Chicago and El Cubanito is my current favorite spot for one. The strength in the Cuban sandwich from Cubanito is in the pork. Its a superior product to the pork used at other spots around town from my perspective. Its very hard for me not to get a Cuban each and every time and that's because these are an excellent example of them. The cheese is always melted perfectly and I guess the only not so strong part is the plain old ham used. Still a great sandwich and one of my favorites in the city or anywhere. Like I always do when ordering a Cuban, I order extra pickles on mine.
Cuban Sandwich from El Cubanito
Le Da Changó!
The perfect balance and molding of flavors in a Cuban sandwich
I said it was hard deciding what to get when going to El Cubanito and another part that plays a role in that is the ham, egg and cheese sandwich. I don't order myself many ham, egg and cheeses if a place isn't cutting the ham off the bone but I still do get them from time to time from here. The bread is done to a perfect crispiness and the egg omelet is wrapped around sauteed ham and its all melted together and makes one outstanding breakfast sandwich. Make sure to put some of their housemade hot sauce on yours.
Ham, egg and cheese
As damn good as the Cuban sandwich is its not even my favorite sandwich on the menu at El Cubanito. That honor would go to the steak sandwiches, either one of them. They take well flavored chopped steak and pile it high on their bread and top it off with lettuce, tomato, cheese, hot sauce and shoestring potato chips. It easily has to be one of my favorite sandwiches in the city. I will usually go the whole nine yards and make mine a steak, egg and cheese which is the same as the regular steak sandwich but with one of their excellent omelets wrapped in. Words really cant describe this sandwiches goodness so instead I'll just show you some pictures and let you know that if you haven't been here and love the food of Florida then get on over. ASAP.
Steak, egg and cheese
an amazing 1-2 punch (a Cuban and steak sandwich)
2555 North Pulaski Road
Chicago, IL 60639-2115